The Criminal Court in Riyadh sentenced a Saudi man to three days of imprisonment and 30 lashes for biting his wife. The court gave the woman the option of waiving the punishment, but if she decides otherwise she can witness the punishment being carried out.
This is the first time a Saudi court has allowed a woman to witness the lashing of her husband.
An informed legal source said security agencies passed the case to court after the woman complained to the authorities that her husband had bitten her, causing a deep wound in her left shoulder. She presented a medical report issued by a government hospital to support her claim. She claimed the man had also beaten her up.
A woman prosecutor visited her at the emergency ward of the hospital found her in a bad mental state, the source told Al-Watan daily.
During the medical checkup doctors found a deep wound in the woman›s left shoulder, causing continuous bleeding. She had lost a considerable amount of blood. There were bruises on her body, which confirmed that she was beaten up.
Police detained the husband and produced him in court. During the trial, the presiding judge read out the charges against him. The man pleaded guilty and said he committed the crime under extreme mental pressure.
He added that he had no other explanation to offer and expressed his regret about what he had done to his wife.
The case was then passed to the reconciliation committee. Despite attending several counseling sessions, the couple did not agree to an amicable settlement. After all options exhausted, the judge gave his verdict sentencing the man to three days› imprisonment and 30 lashes.
The source said the man was convicted of violating regulations for protecting honor and dignity of individuals. He was given a light sentence as he was not involved in any previous crime.
Legal consultant Yasser Al-Abdali said the court issued the verdict against the man on the basis of the Shariah law that prohibits physical and verbal abuse of wives.